SASKATOON (ISN) – The No. 1 seed University of Regina Cougars downed the No. 4 seed Concordia University Stingers 73-60 on Friday night in the CIS West Regional Semifinal at the Physical Activity Complex in Saskatoon.
With the win the Cougars advance to the CIS West Regional Final against the Brock University Badgers. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. Saturday night at the Physical Activity Complex in Saskatoon.
Regina was led by a trio offensively. Canada West MVP Joanna Zalesiak finished just shy of a triple double registering 17 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists. Forward Lindsay Ledingham added another 15 points and guard Michelle Clark tallied 14 for the Cougars.
Kaylah Barrett was the spark plug for the Stingers scoring a game-high 34 and nine rebounds in 36 minutes of play. Anne-Marie Prophete also reached double digits for the Stingers with 11 points.
The Cougars went on a 10-2 run in the opening five minutes of play and never looked back en route to their semifinal victory. Regina doubled-up Concordia 16-8 by the end of the first quarter.
Concordia only scored 11 points through opening 14 minutes of the first half. The Stingers found themselves in a big hole trailing by as many as 18 points and were unable to find success from the floor shooting just 24% in the opening 20 minutes.
The Cougars conversely found a lot of success from the floor converting on 50% of their field goal attempts and went an impressive five for eight from beyond the arc.
Cougars head coach Dave Taylor was pleased with the way his team executed on both sides of the ball.
“I thought we were disciplined both offensive and defensively,” said Taylor. “We found a way to get quality shots and were also able to hold them to a low percentage offensively.”
In the second half the Stingers gave it all they could but came up short as the experience of the Cougars proved to be too much. Concordia’s young squad featuring seven first years and four second year players was unable to execute their game plan in the opening half.
“We were nervous, and it showed early,” said Stingers head coach Keith Pruden. “Credit Regina, they are a very good team and played well, we had a lot of good looks but we just couldn’t capitalize. I was very happy with the effort we put in tonight.”
Regina finished the first half with a 39-26 lead. The Cougars added another 34 points in the second half. Concordia made a small bid for the comeback scoring 23 in the final frame but it was too little too late.
The Cougars will take on the Brock University Badgers who defeated the host University of Saskatchewan Huskies in the other semifinal matchup Friday night, 66-62.
The winner of Saturday’s final will gain an automatic bid in the CIS Final 8 hosted by the University of Calgary March 16-19.
Scoring per quarter:
CON 8-18-11-23: 60
REG 16-23-19-15: 73
Points: Kaylah Barrett (34), Anne-Marie Prophete (11)
Rebounds: Kaylah Barrett (9), Serginha Estime (9)
Assists: Ashley Clarke (3)
Player of the game: Kaylah Barrett
Points: Joanna Zalesiak (17), Lindsay Ledingham (15), Michelle Clark (14)
Rebounds: Joanna Zalesiak (11), Lindsay Ledingham (9)
Assists: Joanna Zalesiak (8)
Player of the game: Joanna Zalesiak